Gareth Bale
Bale's move to Madrid almost fell through.

Gareth Bale's home debut as a Real Madrid player ended in disappointment as his club succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Atletico Madrid, a loss that continues to have the decision to sell Mesut Ozil to Arsenal further questioned.

The world's most expensive player was introduced in an attempt to spark a lacklustre Madrid into life in the second half but could do little to prevent Diego Simeone's side claiming their first league win over their city rivals since 1999, courtesy of another goal from Diego Costa after just 11 minutes.

A performance devoid of that resourceful thinking so often provided by their former Germany international led to whistles being directed at manager Carlo Ancelotti at full time, while Cristiano Ronaldo took it upon himself to make a rare appearance in front of the cameras and defend the Italian boss.

Another weekend critique was once again centred on Karim Benzema, who is now tasked with the responsibility of filling that central striking role following the sale of Gonzalo Higuain. But as ever at the Bernabeu, things are never as straight forward as that. The France international's indifferent form has seen 87.75 per cent of 17,000 partisan Real Madrid readers of Spanish newspaper AS demand Alvaro Morata, Spain's leading goal scorer in the summer's Under-21 European Championship, step in ahead of the Frenchman to lead the line.

But it would appear the source of the club's despairs is still firmly centred on one man. The sight of a video featuring Ozil breaking out one of his party tricks in partaking in a few kick ups with his chewing gum proudly adorning Marca's website amongst columns scrutinising the roles of both Ancelotti and club president Florentino Perez go some way in summing up the mood of Real Madrid fans.

The sight of Arsenal sitting at the summit of the Premier League propelled by the creativity of the German will not help remedy those Madrid fans still struggling to digest the sale of one of Europe's best playmakers.

As Ancelotti continues to try and implement a brand of slick passing football, the typically impatient Bernabeu crowd are already questioning those central decisions made by the club over the summer. As the autopsy continues, Real look up from third place in La Liga, five points off leaders Barcelona and neighbours Atletico, who boast perfect records with seven wins out of seven.

Just four games into his Real Madrid career and Bale could bear witness to his first taste of a crisis in the Spanish capital. The Champions League visit of FC Copenhagen and the following domestic visit of Levante are simply must win games for the under pressure Ancelotti.

The last week of October sees Los Blancos faced with two pivotal tests that will really begin to test the resolve of perplexed fans, with a huge European clash with Juventus followed by the season's first El Clasico at the Nou Camp.

But Bale's inevitable impact cannot come soon enough for Real Madrid who are pining for a new hero as the post-mortem of Ozil's departure continues.